Operational Update #2 from the Department of Internal Affairs

8 April 2020

Exercising leniency in relation to Regulations 10 and 11

Further to our update on 27 March 2020, we continue to monitor and assess the impacts of COVID-19 on the gambling sector.

To directly address issues relating to feasibility and sustainability in the Class 4 gambling sector, the Department is going to exercise leniency in relation to the regulations governing the administration of community return.

This involves:

  • Not enforcing the regulation 10 (40% quantum) requirement for an initial period of12 weeks; and
  • Not enforcing the regulation 11 (timing of distributions) requirement for an initial period of 12 weeks.

With both actions, we'll retain flexibility to extend this period or respond to futureCOVID-19 risk levels as required.

This is a temporary measure to provide immediate and medium-term relief to societies.

Societies should also be aware of recent Government announcements relating to changes to the Companies Act, to support businesses to remain viable. These include a temporary ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency duties, and relief from compliance with constitutional requirements due to COVID-19.

Future distribution of funds

The distribution of gambling proceeds collected prior to the shutdown will be revisited when gambling resumes.

Community funding

The current situation has, and will continue to significantly impact community funding in New Zealand. The Department continues to assess the scale of this impact, including the loss of Class 4 funding.

Clubs

The Department also continues to look at what measures might be put in place to specifically support clubs when they are able to reopen.

Updates

We are continuing to monitor the situation and are updating the questions and answers on DIA’s gambling website regularly.

If you have specific questions, please email gambling.compliance@dia.govt.nz

Lisa Docherty

Director Gambling Regulatory System

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